3 out of 4 stars
Review by MarisaRose
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Will’s writing is thorough, yet imaginative. Last Entry is chock-full of factual information about Arctic exploration. Meticulous details about wildlife, climate and past inhabitants are provided throughout the novel; even descriptions of how to fend off a polar bear attack and the exact amounts of food needed to survive an extended time in the Arctic are provided. Though there is a ton of information contained in the pages of this novel, the author manages to inform the reader in an interesting manner without taking away from the overall story.
Unfortunately, the book could have used another editorial review as there were quite a few grammatical mistakes throughout. Although the errors were not entirely distracting, they were apparent and sloppy. Noticeable errors included incorrect wording and sentence structure.
Though I liked a great deal about Last Entry, there was one major flaw. It isn’t until about 75% of the way into the novel that the story becomes exciting! The first three quarters of the book are nice; the dialogue is good, the informational sections are long yet interesting, and the character development is adequate. However, nothing substantive actually happens. The first half of the book entails the lead up to the expedition, focusing on what the students will be studying during the expedition as well as the physical preparation for the mission (e.g. gathering of food and supplies). Once the team arrives on Banks Island, a good portion of the book is spent explaining their day to day activities, which really aren’t that exciting; the scientists find a couple of cool archaeological sites to study and see some wildlife. It isn’t until the very end of the novel that the pacing revs up and critical events and conflict start to emerge. The last fourth of the book was by far the most enjoyable, although it felt rushed.
From the beginning, Last Entry has the appearance of an exciting tale of perilous adventure. Unfortunately, the absence of any climactic events or conflict until the last segment of the story was a disappointment. Though the plot structure was lacking, there were enjoyable aspects of Last Entry, namely the well communicated factual information about the Arctic and the events the characters face at the books conclusion. For those reasons, I rate Last Entry 3 out of 4 stars. Fans of adventure stories and those interested in Arctic exploration may find this book interesting.
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